: Let's talk about what you do?
: I've been modeling for over 18 years and have been a food blogger for 3. (pickledplum.net
). It was a way to collect and share my own recipes with the hopes of making it a profitable business.
: Name 5 ingredients that best describe your recipes?
: Soy sauce, fish sauce, lots of veggies, ginger & extra-virgin olive oil.
: How does your heritage influence your recipes?
: My mother is Japanese and my father French Canadian. I grew up in a small town near Quebec City where everyone only speaks French. What my mother cooked throughout my childhood has greatly influenced the way I prepare food. I grew up eating frog legs with a side of Japanese rice! Everything my mother made was dainty and colorful. She always made sure we had enough fruits and vegetables on our plate and strong flavors to accompany them. Nothing was ever bland, her priority in the kitchen was to make sure food always tasted good and everyone loved her cooking!
: How does living in NYC influence your food?
: Living in NYC is an advantage if you're a food blogger, because you'll never run out of places to eat. In fact it's the exact opposite; it's hard to keep track of all the new restaurants opening every week! The biggest influence I've gotten from living in NYC is how diverse and unique cooking can be. We have a lot of gutsy cooks out here who aren't afraid to combine ingredients you'd never imagined went well together. This keeps my creativity going and gives me lots of ideas in my own kitchen.
: How has being a Model influenced your recipes?
: Modeling greatly influenced my cooking! You may think that's weird since we're known for having eating disorders! But all the traveling I did because of my job made me discover cuisines and flavor combinations I had never tasted before. The health aspect of my cooking also comes from modeling because I had to maintain a certain weight, and still do. Now, it's just part of my lifestyle since it's been a part of my life for so long. I studied about food because I didn't want to fall into that trap of starving myself. Plus, I like eating too much to give up sweets or junk food once in a while!
: Thoughts on Food Trends?
: Not really, my personal trend is to keep trying new flavors. I'd say the biggest trends right now are hot dogs with Asian toppings, Korean food in general, ramen noodle shops and Japanese style pubs (izakaya). I honestly don't know why it took so long for Asian food to become so popular, it's healthier and so tasty!
: What would you say to someone who wants to eat healthy, but cheap.
: Make soups and stir fries, they're really cheap and easy to make. You can make a huge pot of vegetable soup for less than $15, that will last you all week if you live on your own. I do this a lot when I have a busy week coming up but still want to eat healthy. Another trick I apply to every single one of my recipes and in my every day cooking is to add one or two extra veggies in my dishes. For example, say you are making a cheap spaghetti with store bought tomato sauce: Adding chopped onions, some garlic and a chopped green bell pepper will make your dish healthier and only cost a little more. Cooking is the key to well being and yet, people put so little effort into it. If you eat well, you'll have more energy, be happier and eat less (no more empty calorie snacks!) There are no adverse effect to eating well so why not take a little more time every day to cook for yourself and treat your body and your soul with love and respect?
: Favorite condiment?
: Too many! Rice vinegar, fish sauce and sri racha.
: Favorite NYC restaurant(s)?
: Oh this is hard! I have so many! I love Soba Totto
and Num Pang
sandwich bar. We just moved to Park Slope in Brooklyn so right now we are in the midst of trying all the popular top spots. So far Petezaaz
has the best pizza and Taro sushi
's sushi rocks!
Various locations across NYC
211 E 43rd St. NYC 10017 (212)557.8200
766 Classon Ave. Brooklyn, NY 11238 (718)230.ZAAZ
244 Flatbush Ave. Brooklyn, NY 11217 (718)398.5240